Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Stem Cell Controversy


A scientific panel says a 2002 study that suggested adult stem cells might be as useful as embryonic ones was flawed and its conclusions may be wrong, a finding that raises questions about the promise of a less-controversial source for stem cells. The research by Catherine Verfaillie at the University of Minnesota concluded that adult stem cells taken from the bone marrow of mice could grow into an array of biological tissues, including brain, heart, lung and liver. So far only embryonic stem cells, which are commonly retrieved by destroying embryos at an early stage of development, are known to hold such regenerative promise. Many scientists think these cells might one day be used to treat certain diseases and other conditions.

Opponents of stem-cell research seized on the 2002 findings as evidence that stem-cell science could move forward without destroying embryos. But Miss Verfaillie has acknowledged flaws in parts of the study after inquiries from the British magazine New Scientist, which first publicized the questions last week. The panel concluded that it wasn't clear whether the flaws mean Miss Verfaillie's conclusions were wrong. It also determined that the flaws were mistakes, not falsifications. (Washington Times)

Since many successful treatments have been made on numerous diseases with adult stem cells and the placenta is now known to be filled with stem cells, this study may now be moot, flawed or otherwise. Much new scientific data on this issue has been revealed since 2002. Continue to pray that the media will expose more of the truth of these new discoveries so that mothers will save the placentas of their newborns. Continue to pray that President Bush will stand firm against embryonic stem cell research. • "I was cast upon Thee from the womb; Thou art my God from my mother's belly." (Psalm 22:10)